Our first Salsa experience, was at a night club in Toronto Canada called Berlins where the Salsa night was hosted by Josie Neglia, it wasn’t until we returned to London that we decided to take lessons in 1992, with the first generation of UK Instructors Xihomara Granados, Nelson Batiste, Ramiro Zapata and Zina. We were first introduced to cross body style dancing by Pedro Gomez and have since gone on to work with and learn different styles from such salsa luminaries as Eddie Torres, Nelson Flores (Descarga Latina), Thomas Guerrero (SantoRico), Frankie Martínez and many others. Owing to these influences, we have experienced styles ranging from Columbian and Cuban Salsa, to the Cross Body styles “On 1″ / “On 2″ and Cha Cha Cha.
In May 1999, we had our first Salsa Congress experience at the first SalsaWeb Convention (which was hosted in Washington DC), we were really inspired by the amount of talent on display there, this plus the encouragement from Nelson Flores and some friends who wanted us to teach them, prompted us to start MamboCity which we did in August 1999, our first class had about 15 of our friends, we held our first party in October of that year which was a Halloween Fancy Dress/Mask Party.The following month (November), we got involved in promoting a New York dance group who wanted to come to the UK, Luis Zegarra of Fuerza Latina and Ismael Otero of Caribean Soul, This happened by chance, due to a promoter, who was responsible for organising the event pulling out, Luis Zegarra persuaded us to go ahead with the promotion. Since then MamboCity has gone on to host and promote Workshops and Showcase weekends and the following events:
- November 1999: Luis Zegarra of Fuerza Latina and Ismael Otero of Caribean Soul (Photo’s)
- March 2000: We held the UK’s very first On2 Social at the The Globe (Cellar Bar) Marylebone Road.
- April 2000: We had the pleasure of having the Mambo King himself Eddie Torres and Nelida perform and Henry Knowles DJ at Bootsy Brogans, Wembley, Middlesex
- February 2001: Nelson Flores – Descarga Latina, SantoRico Dancer Co, Alma y Sabor (Featuring Daniela and Graziano), 18 Dancers from New York and Italy took part in a Show called “Latin Connection” for a St Valentines weekend of Workshops and showcase, this showcase was only ever perform once and was the fore-runner for the much acclaimed off Broadway show “Latin Madness” (Photo’s) it was a collaboration that saw us work with Joseph Davids of Latin 8.
- June 2001: Launch Party of Salsa @Tudor Rose (23rd June), Featured Leon Rose, Susana Montero & DJ Julian “The Duke”
- October 2001: SantoRico Dance Co, Weekend of Workshops and Shows and production of the Mambocity Presents SantoRico Video.
- November 2001: The Cobo Brothers Weekend of Workshops and Shows
- December 2001: Christmas Party, featuring Frankie Martinez, Aisha Koswara and Henry Knowles
- March 2002: Launch Night of Monthly Saturday @The Camden Center (2nd March) Tribute to Xhiromara Granados
- April 2002: Nelson Flores – Descarga Latina, Jai and Candy Weekend of Workshops and Shows World Premier of “Merecumbe Dance Routine” (Photo’s)
- May 2002: Launch of Annual Trip To Cuba (Photos)
- May 2002: Launch Party of Monthly Fridays @Ealing Town Hall (3rd May)
- July 2002: Frankie Martinez and Aisha Koswara Workshop and Show. World Premier of “Welcome to The Party Dance Routine” @Tudor Rose (Photo’s)
- August 2002: Annual Trip to Barcelona
- December 2002: ”The Palladium Mambo Legends” Freddie Rios and Mike Ramos End of year Workshop and Show. (Photo’s)
- March 1st 2003: Frankie Martinez and Lori – Perez Workshop and Show.
- July 2003: The First SalsaSplash Weekender @Hayling Island
- August 2003: Launch Party Monthly Saturdays @Carisbrook Hall (9th August)
- December 2003: The first 5 Star Weekend @The Radisson Edwardian Hotel Heathrow, a End Of Year Weekender featuring SantoRico, Nelson Flores, Duplessy Walker, Mario “B”, Susana Montero, Rafael & Janet, Homero Gonzalez, Osbanis and many more
- February 2004: Weekly Fridays @Ealing Town Hall (13th Feb)
- April 2004: The First 5 Star Congress @The Radisson Edwardian Hotel Heathrow, MamboCity’s 1st Salsa Congress featuring Eddie Torres and The Eddie Torres Dancers, Felipe Polanco, Rene Guiets and Salsa Lovers, Daniela and Graziano, Susana Montero, Rafael & Janet and many more
- July 2004: SalsaSplash Weekender @Hayling Island
- December 2004: 5 Star Weekend @The Radisson Edwardian Hotel Heathrow, a End Of Year Weekender featuring Hacha y Machete, Nelson Flores, Jesus Aponte, Raphael & Janet, Herve Suzan (Uforia Dance Co), Farid Ferchach
- April 2005: 5 Star Congress @The Radisson Edwardian Hotel Heathrow, MamboCity’s Salsa Congress featuring Eddie Torres and The Eddie Torres Dancers, Felipe Polanco, Tito & Tamara, Edie Salsa Freak & Al Espinoza, Joby Brava, Daniela & Graziano, Susana Montero, Leon Rose, Carmen & Raul and many more
- October 2006: The First SalsaSpash Spain, Held at Hotel Guitart, Llorett De Mar near Barcelona
- July 2007: Manolito Simonet Y Su Trabuco in Concert
The Mambo: of African and European parentage, Mambo, Conga and Bongo were originally Bantu names for musical instruments that were used in rituals and gradually became secular. Mambo means “conversation with the gods” and in Cuba designates a sacred song of the Congo (Cubans of Bantu origin).
The Congos absorbed a variety of foreign influences and the mambo drum rhythm became a cocktail of Bantu, Spanish and Yoruba. Coupled with Western Jazz, these beats provided the basis for the creation of the Mambo then the Cha Cha Cha and Salsa. The mambo is the result of a long cross-cultural journey, A journey through life with Music and Dance.